Demand Accountability and Transparency for Government Employees who Mistreat Wildlife
The feds tried to cover up wildlife abuse and torture. Now it’s time to demand change.
Tell Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack that you expect the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) to implement clear guidelines that prohibit mistreatment of wildlife by federal employees, and to implement a new system that prevents future scandals.
The USDA oversees the activities of Wildlife Services, including trapper Jamie P. Olson, who likely posted photos on Facebook of his dogs killing trapped coyotes. The USDA conducted an investigation, but disclosed its findings to no one, not even to the members of Congress who requested it.
Newly-leaked documents show that the USDA’s investigation into these horrific acts resulted in no action against Olson, not even a reprimand. A Tweet from Congressman Campbell and the leaked documents seem to indicate that the agency attempted to cover up the matter.
Ironically, the USDA is the federal agency charged with enforcing the nation’s animal welfare laws. Without its own clear guidelines prohibiting its own employees from torturing and abusing wildlife, USDA holds no credibility.
To prevent future scandals, demand that the USDA create an easy way for the public to register complaints that involve USDA activities. Investigations into conduct like Olson’s must be conducted efficiently and transparently. Also, the results of those investigations should be made public.
Tell Secretary Vilsack that torture of wildlife by federal employees is unacceptable and investigations into complaints need to be completed in a timely and transparent manner.
Join WildEarth Guardians to ask Secretary Vilsack to immediately implement clear codes of conduct for USDA employees that prohibit abuse and torture of wild animals, a system for registering complaints against USDA , and a policy of transparency for timely investigation and publication of results of such investigations.
For the Wild,
Carnivore Protection Program Director